|Publication number||US7962734 B2|
|Application number||US 11/686,528|
|Publication date||Jun 14, 2011|
|Filing date||Mar 15, 2007|
|Priority date||Sep 20, 2006|
|Also published as||US20080072028|
|Publication number||11686528, 686528, US 7962734 B2, US 7962734B2, US-B2-7962734, US7962734 B2, US7962734B2|
|Inventors||Michael S. Allison, Stephen Patrick Hack, John A. Morrison|
|Original Assignee||Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P.|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (35), Classifications (5), Legal Events (4)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This application is a continuation-in-part of prior U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/523,870, filed Sep. 20, 2006 now U.S. Pat. No. 7,600,111, which is hereby incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.
Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) is a specification that makes hardware status information available to an operating system (OS) in a computer, such as a laptop, desktop, server, etc. More information about ACPI may be found in the 600-plus page “Advanced Configuration and Power Interface Specification,” Revision 3.0a, Dec. 30, 2005, cooperatively defined by Hewlett-Packard Corporation, Intel Corporation, Microsoft Corporation, Phoenix Technologies Ltd., and Toshiba Corporation, available at http://www.acpi.info/DOWNLOADS/ACPIspec30a.pdf. The ACPI specification was developed to establish industry common interfaces enabling robust OS-directed motherboard device configuration and power management of both devices and entire systems. ACPI is the key element in operating system-directed configuration and power management (OSPM).
ACPI is used in computing platforms running a variety of operating systems, and allows the operating system to manipulate hardware resources. For example, ACPI assists in power management by allowing a computer system's peripherals to be powered on and off for improved power management. ACPI also allows the computer system to be turned on and off by external devices. For example, the touch of a mouse or the press of a key may wake up a computer system in a sleep or stand-by mode using ACPI.
ACPI has its own source and machine languages, referred to as ACPI Source Language (ASL) and ACPI Machine Language (AML), respectively. ASL is used to write new ACPI control methods, whereby ACPI is used by an OS to control new devices, or to control devices in new ways. ACPI comprises both static and interpretable tables containing device information. When the computing platform is powered on or restarted, the system firmware (such as the BIOS, or Basic Input/Output System) constructs the static tables, which are used by the OS. The interpretable tables are composed of AML, which is merged into the system firmware. The operating system reads the AML from the interpretable tables and executes the architected interfaces, using an ACPI interpreter. In this fashion, the operating system manipulates hardware resources. Because the interpretable tables are merged into the system firmware, this conventional approach can lack flexibility in controlling various configurations of a computing platform.
An ACPI namespace is a hierarchical tree structure in OS-controlled memory that contains named objects. These objects may be data objects, control method objects, bus/device package objects, and so on. The OS dynamically changes the contents of the namespace by loading and/or unloading definition blocks from the ACPI tables. Information in the ACPI namespace comes from a differentiated system description table (DSDT), which contains the differentiated definition block, and one or more other definition blocks. An original equipment manufacturer (OEM) typically supplies a DSDT to an ACPI-compatible OS, which supplies the implementation and configuration information about the base system. The OS inserts the DSDT information into the ACPI namespace at system boot time and doesn't remove it.
Another ACPI construct is the secondary system description table (SSDT). Multiple SSDTs can be used as part of a platform description. After the DSDT is loaded into the ACPI namespace, each secondary description table with a unique OEM Table ID is loaded. This allows the OEM to provide the base support in one table, while adding smaller system options in other tables. Additional tables can only add data; they cannot overwrite or remove data from previous tables.
Another construct in the ACPI architecture is defined by the system abstract layer (SAL); and is called a firmware interface table (FIT). The FIT contains starting addresses and sizes for the firmware components that are outside the protected boot block. A good overview of the FIT entry specification may be found in the “IntelŪ ItaniumŪ Processor Family System Abstraction Layer Specification”, Document No. 245359-007, (Intel December 2003), available at http://www.intel.com/design/itanium/downloads/24535907.pdf.
Presented is a method of restarting a computer platform after an initial boot, to reboot more quickly than initially to a state in which an application can be run. An Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) control method is introduced for marking devices that are not critical for booting the OS to execute applications. Such devices can comprise, for example, processors, memory, and/or input/output (I/O) devices. The operating system (OS) invokes the ACPI control method to mark such devices. The computing platform retains this information in a data store for the next time the computer platform is powered on or restarted. On the next start, the non-critical device information is retrieved. ACPI tables then built by the computing platform identify all of the devices for the OS, but those devices that were marked as not critical for boot are disabled, and the OS boots without them, thereby saving OS booting time. In addition, testing and/or initialization of the non-critical devices may be “offloaded” (i.e., delayed until after the OS boots, or performed in parallel with the booting of the OS), thus potentially reducing the OS booting time further. Once the OS is booted, the platform can run applications. The computing platform notifies the OS to perform ACPI on-line add operations to add the devices marked non-critical to the booted OS, after which the OS can use those devices. Devices can also be marked by the OS as non-critical after the occurrence of events other than startup, such as when configuration changes occur, or when device errors are detected. This enables the OS to continually identify criticality of devices. The non-critical resources stored by the platform preferably can also be reset by a user to a default configuration, such as to the factory default settings, for example, in case the resources are incorrectly set.
It is to be understood that both the foregoing general description and the following detailed description are exemplary and explanatory and are intended to provide further explanation of the invention as claimed.
The accompanying drawings, which are included to provide a further understanding of the invention and are incorporated in and constitute a part of this specification, illustrate embodiments of the invention and together with the description serve to explain the principles of the invention.
In the drawings:
Reference will now be made in detail to various embodiments of the present invention, example of which is illustrated in the accompanying drawings.
Provided is a mechanism that uses a new ACPI control method in conjunction with ACPI on-line add features whereby an OS of a restarted computing platform boots faster than an initial boot, to the point of being able to run an application. The new ACPI control method is invoked by the OS to identify devices that do not need to be booted to run the application. The computing platform retains non-critical device information for use the next time the computing platform is started. The next time the computing platform is started, the platform retrieves the non-critical device information, and ACPI tables built by the platform identify all of the devices, but those devices that were specified as not critical are disabled in the ACPI tables. The OS uses the ACPI tables to boot. After the OS boots, it cannot use the disabled devices, but it is able to run applications, and it has achieved a state in which it can run applications more quickly than if it had booted with all devices enabled. The platform then performs ACPI on-line add operations to add the non-critical devices to the booted OS. Once all of the devices have been added, the OS is fully operational. In this way, the OS boots faster to the point where it can start processing applications.
The OS also invokes the new ACPI control method after the occurrence of events other than startup that affect the operation of devices, such as configuration changes, device errors, and the like. Thereby, the OS continually identifies the criticality of devices.
After the ACPI tables are built, control passes to the OS. The OS boots with the non-critical devices disabled, in other words, with only critical devices enabled. Applications can then run (step 220). The computing platform then performs ACPI on-line add operations to enable the devices marked non-critical in the ACPI tables as initially reported to the OS (step 230), thereby avoiding race conditions in which the OS tries to modify the list of non-critical devices before the computing platform completes the on-line additions. In conjunction with the ACPI on-line add operations, the platform may perform or initiate testing/initialization of one or more of the non-critical devices that was previously delayed or postponed, as described above, as part of the on-line add operation for that particular non-critical device. In another embodiment, the ACPI on-line add operations may occur without completion of the testing/initialization of one or more of the non-critical devices. In that case, the OS may assume responsibility for performing at least some of the test/initialization of those non-critical devices.
The non-critical devices are then added to the booted OS (step 240), whereupon the OS is fully booted (step 250). The OS monitors the computer platform for an event that alters the availability or criticality of devices, such as a configuration change or a device error, for example (Step 260). If such an alteration is detected, the OS invokes the new ACPI control method and again marks devices not critical to boot for running applications (step 270). The OS flushes the prior non-critical device information in the data store, and stores information of the newly marked non-critical devices in the data store for use in the next boot-up (step 280).
In accordance with the invention, after an initial boot the computing platform can be restarted with a minimum set of devices, so that the OS boots as quickly as possible. In addition, the OS monitors for resources to be enabled or disabled at the next boot. This makes the invention usable in any OS that uses ACPI.
All patents, patent applications, publications, and other references cited or described in this document are hereby incorporated herein by reference, in their entirety.
Various modifications and variations can be made in the present invention without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention. Thus, it is intended that the present invention cover the modifications and variations of this invention provided they come within the scope of the appended claims and their equivalents.
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|U.S. Classification||713/1, 713/2|
|Mar 23, 2007||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: HEWLETT-PACKARD DEVELOPMENT COMPANY, L.P., TEXAS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:ALLISON, MICHAEL S.;HACK, STEPHEN PATRICK;MORRISON, JOHNA.;REEL/FRAME:019083/0446;SIGNING DATES FROM 20070314 TO 20070319
Owner name: HEWLETT-PACKARD DEVELOPMENT COMPANY, L.P., TEXAS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:ALLISON, MICHAEL S.;HACK, STEPHEN PATRICK;MORRISON, JOHNA.;SIGNING DATES FROM 20070314 TO 20070319;REEL/FRAME:019083/0446
|Dec 6, 2011||CC||Certificate of correction|
|Dec 8, 2014||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 4
|Nov 9, 2015||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: HEWLETT PACKARD ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT LP, TEXAS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:HEWLETT-PACKARD DEVELOPMENT COMPANY, L.P.;REEL/FRAME:037079/0001
Effective date: 20151027